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German Dialect: Bavarian Phrases

July 31, 2017

Maybe you're like me-spent a large chunk of your life studying the German language. Thought it was fun and interesting and found a real passion for it. Then, you decided to take the leap and just move to Germany. What a great thing! Now I can really test all my German skills.

Once you get all of your plans set up, you realize you're moving to Bavaria! How exciting-a very unique and distinctive part of Germany. And then you realize...

They don't speak Hochdeutsch.

Maybe you moved to Northern Germany where they speak Plattdeutcsh. Or Low-Saxon Westniederdeutsch. 

Maybe you moved to the Northeast where they use Ostniederdeutsche Dialekte.

Oh god. Just looking at High German there's North Hessian, East Hessian, Rhine Franconian, Silesian German, High Prussian, Austro-Bavarian, Alemannic.....and more.

Terrifying, right?

Some are mutually intelligible with Standard German. Some are not.


I mean, German is hard enough, right? Why we gotta make it even harder? 

Well you booked your flight and have your host family all figured out. Too late to back out now! Guess it's time I study up on some Bavarian-I mean Bayerisch. Or Bairisch. Here goes nothing.

german language

Bairisch: Grüß Gott (Grias god)

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Guten Tag
English Translation: Good day/greeting

Bairisch: Guadn moing

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Guten Morgen
English Translation: Good morning

Bairisch: Guadn åmd

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Guten Abend
English Translation: Good afternoon/evening

Bairisch: Guad nåhd

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Gute Nacht
English Translation: Good night

Bairisch: Via hoassn si?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Wie heißen Sie?
English Translation: What is your name?

Bairisch: I hoas ...

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Ich heiße...
English Translation: I am called...

Bairisch: Še das ma uns aa kenna leana

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Sich kennenzulernen
English Translation: Nice to meet you

Bairisch: Vo kemman s' hea?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Woher kommen Sie?
English Translation: Where are you from?

Bairisch: I kim aus ...

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Ich komme aus...
English Translation: I come from...

Bairisch: Seavus!

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Hallo/Tschüss
English Translation: Hi/See you!

Bairisch: Af vidašaung

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Auf Wiedersehen
English Translation: Goodbye

Bairisch: Endšuldigng s' 

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Entschuldigung Sie
English Translation: Excuse me

Bairisch: Duad ma laid

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Es tut mir leid
English Translation: I'm sorry

Bairisch: Iå/Na/Ko sei

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Ja/Nein/Vielleicht
English Translation: Yes/No/Maybe

Bairisch: Via ged's eana? 

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Wie geht es Ihnen?
English Translation: How are you?

Bairisch: Guad und dia?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Gut und dir?
English Translation: Good and you? (In reply to How are you?)

Bairisch: Bidd šee

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Bitte Sie/Bitte schön
English Translation: Please

Bairisch: Vås kossd des?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Wie viel kostet das?
English Translation: How much does this cost?

Bairisch: Kena s' Engliš?/Šbreha s' Engliš?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Sprechen Sie Englisch?
English Translation: Do you speak English?

Bairisch: Vo is as glo?

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Wo ist die Toilette?
English Translation: Where is the bathroom?

Bairisch: Pfiat di

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Tschüss!
English Translation: Bye bye!

Bairisch: Freilich/Na Freilich!

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Natürlich
English Translation: Of course


Terms unique to Bavaria

Bairisch: Buam und Madln/Dirdln

Hochdeutsch Equivalent: Männer und Frauen

English Translation: Men and women (you may see these words on bathroom doors! Good to know the difference!)

Bairisch: a Maß

English Translation: A liter of beer in a traditional mug


Bairisch: Schau ma moi

English Translation: Time will tell

Bairisch: Wies’n

English Translation: Shorthand for Oktoberfest

Bairisch: Schmarrn

English Translation: That's nonsense

Bairisch: Host mi!

English Translation: Bavarian form of Basta!

Bairisch: Gell

English Translation: Isn't it?

Bairisch: Ogschdocha

English Translation: Drunk

Want more on German? You came to the right place! 

10 Difficult Concepts in the German Language

German for Travelers

Is German Hard to Learn? 

| Voyaging Viking | German Dialect: Bavarian Phrases
Siggi Einarson

My name is Siggi-dubbed by my American friends because of the Icelandic yogurt-I am a writer, polyglot, and aspiring expat, not a cup of yogurt (unfortunately).

My love for travelling began with a trip to Iceland and Sweden to visit my family when I was just 15 years old. I spent so long dreaming of the possibilities of life abroad but I always figured these dreams were too far reached. Flash forward almost 10 years, here I am again, both cursing and thanking this damn travel bug.

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